Although fasting is an ancient tradition and practiced to some extent in almost every religious persuasion, it is a modern trend that is gaining new momentum and relevance for others.
Studies done at the university level have found that fasting may elicit some of the following effects:
Benefits of Fasting
- A reduction in arterial clogging
- Removal of harmful toxins from the organs and tissues
- An ability to keep the appetite in check
- A jump start for a weight loss program
- As a means to increased longevity
- A delay in the onset of heart disease, mental decline, and diabetes
Fasting is also used as a means of establishing discipline over the mind and body. Some even claim to find spiritual enlightenment through its practice.
Learn How to Fast?
Fasting is not something that should be entered into lightly, and certain groups of people should never fast. These include people with serious health conditions such as anemia, cancer, hypoglycemia, or heart disease.
Individuals with bleeding ulcers or tumors, those with a history of bulimia or anorexia, and pregnant and nursing women should also refrain from fasting.
To get the body ready for a fast of more than a week, it is best to prepare it slowly. The following tips may prevent headaches, hunger pangs, and irritability:
- Take several days to detoxify the system slowly from caffeine, white sugar and fatty foods.
- Reduce calories by a small amount at a time.
- Increase consumption of water and fruit or vegetable juices significantly.
- Cut back on strenuous activity.
- Build up the system with healthy food choices and vitamins.
Short or Long Fasts – Which One is Right For You?
Fasting can be done in a variety of ways.
Many proponents of fasting set aside one day each month for this practice and find that they are refreshed physically, mentally, and spiritually through this action. Others find that longer fasts are better to completely detoxify the body and plan fasts that lasts as long as twenty days or more.
These fasts often include fruits and vegetables or at least juices made from them. Some of those who fast for longer periods also take a variety of herbal supplements during this time.
Many different types of fasting have been used successfully. You must decide the best option for you and whether fasting can provide any physical or emotional benefits in your life.